Zoekresultaat: 331 artikelen

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Article

Truly Exceptional? Participants in the Belgian 2019 Youth for Climate Protest Wave

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering Online First 2022
Trefwoorden protest, participation, inequality, climate change, Fridays For Future
Auteurs Ruud Wouters, Michiel De Vydt en Luna Staes
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In 2019, the world witnessed an exceptional wave of climate protests. In this case study, we scrutinise who participated in the protests staged in Belgium. We ask: did the exceptional mobilising context of the 2019 protest wave also bring exceptional protesters to the streets? Were thanks to the unique momentum standard barriers to protest participation overcome? We answer these questions by comparing three surveys of participants in the 2019 protest wave with three surveys of relevant reference publics. Our findings show that while the Belgian 2019 protest was in many ways exceptional, its participants were less so. Although participants – especially in the early phase of the protest wave – were less protest experienced, younger and unaffiliated to organisations, our findings simultaneously confirm the persistence of a great many well-known socio-demographic and political inequalities. Our conclusion centres on the implications of these findings.


Ruud Wouters
Ruud Wouters, PhD, is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Antwerp. He studies protest participation and the impact of protest on media, public opinion and politics.

Michiel De Vydt
Michiel De Vydt is a PhD student at the University of Antwerp. He studies the micro-level predictors and outcomes of interpersonal protest recruitment.

Luna Staes
Luna Staes is a PhD student at the University of Antwerp. She studies how protest affects public opinion in the hybrid media environment. All authors are members of research group Media, Movements & Politics (M²P) at the political science department of the University of Antwerp.

    In 2019, the world witnessed an exceptional wave of climate protests. In this case study, we scrutinise who participated in the protests staged in Belgium. We ask: did the exceptional mobilising context of the 2019 protest wave also bring exceptional protesters to the streets? Were thanks to the unique momentum standard barriers to protest participation overcome? We answer these questions by comparing three surveys of participants in the 2019 protest wave with three surveys of relevant reference publics. Our findings show that while the Belgian 2019 protest was in many ways exceptional, its participants were less so. Although participants – especially in the early phase of the protest wave – were less protest experienced, younger and unaffiliated to organisations, our findings simultaneously confirm the persistence of a great many well-known socio-demographic and political inequalities. Our conclusion centres on the implications of these findings.

Reflectie & debat

Access_open Het failliet van het poldermodel?

Leren van publieke beleidsbemiddeling

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 3 2022
Auteurs Wouter Mensink en Amber Bosse
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Reflection & debate initiates academically inspired discussions on issues that are on the current policy agenda.


Wouter Mensink
Dr. Wouter Mensink is adviseur bij Public Mediation.

Amber Bosse
Mr. Amber Bosse is adviseur bij Public Mediation

    At the beginning of the corona crisis, there was a real wave of solidarity actions, for example people helping each other in villages and neighbourhoods, and buying food from close by. At the same time, opinion articles appeared about the historical-social context in which the COVID-19 virus could have such a rapid impact on society. These two observations have led to this research into the potential of citizen collectives in times of crisis. First, it was shown that, in combating the pandemic, governments paid little or no attention to the possibilities of citizen collectives to reach citizens in villages, districts and neighbourhoods through direct, personal channels. In contrast, the analysis of 20 opinion articles from the period March-June 2020 shows that the value shifts that most authors consider desirable to address the big issues in society are a good fit with the values that citizen collectives represent. For three domains – care and housing, work and food – this is illustrated with existing practices and new needs. Their conclusion is that the government would do well to make a strong appeal to the organizing capacity of active citizens, their networks and community strength when tackling major social challenges related to climate, energy, care, food and housing.


Tine De Moor
Prof. dr. T. De Moor is als hoogleraar Social Enterprise and Institutions for Collective Action werkzaam bij Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Ton Duffhues
Dr. A.T.M. Duffhues is als senior-onderzoeker Social Enterprise and Institutions for Collective Action werkzaam bij Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.
Research Note

Did the COVID-19 Pandemic Reduce Attention to Environmental Issues?

A Panel Study Among Parents in Belgium, 2019-2020

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2022
Trefwoorden issue competition, COVID-19 pandemic, panel study, environmental concern, Belgium
Auteurs Sari Verachtert, Dieter Stiers en Marc Hooghe
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Theories on issue competition assume that there is only a limited number of issues that a person prioritises simultaneously. In this research note, we test this mechanism by using a panel study that was conducted among Belgian parents in 2019 and 2020. Between the two observations of the study, the country suffered a severe health crisis due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We investigate whether this crisis reduced the priority of environmental issues among respondents. Our results show that there was indeed a significant decline of some indicators for environmental concern, but not for others. Furthermore, we show that a higher priority for the health-related and economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic was associated with a steeper decline in environmental concern.


Sari Verachtert
Sari Verachtert is a PhD student at the Centre for Political Science at the University of Leuven. Her research focuses mainly on attitudes and behaviours towards sustainable development.

Dieter Stiers
Dieter Stiers is post-doctoral researcher of FWO Vlaanderen at the Centre for Political Science Research at KU Leuven. His research focuses on elections and voting behaviour.

Marc Hooghe
Marc Hooghe is a Full Professor of Political Science at the University of Leuven. He has written mostly about political participation and political trust.
Article

Fit for Office? The Perception of Female and Male Politicians by Dutch Voters

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2022
Trefwoorden political underrepresentation, gender stereotypes, role incongruity, candidate evaluation, experimental vignette study
Auteurs Rozemarijn E. van Dijk en Joop van Holsteyn
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The underrepresentation of women in politics is a worldwide phenomenon and the Netherlands fit the pattern: about 39% of the Dutch MPs are female. Based on social role incongruity theory, it is expected that female politicians are evaluated more negatively than male politicians since women do not fit the dominant male politician role. However, most research is conducted in the United States, that is, a candidate-centred system where individual characteristics play an important role. This article focuses on the party-centred parliamentary context in which we examine (1) whether gender stereotypes are present among citizens and (2) to what extent these stereotypes influence the evaluation of politicians. We do this by conducting an experimental vignette survey design. We find that at the mass level there is no difference between the evaluation of male and female politicians, although gender stereotypes are present.


Rozemarijn E. van Dijk
Rozemarijn E. van Dijk is a PhD student at the department of political science at the University of Antwerp, Belgium.

Joop van Holsteyn
Joop J.M. van Holsteyn is Professor in Political Behaviour and Research Methods at Leiden University, the Netherlands.
Article

Opening an Absolute Majority A Typology of Motivations for Opening and Selecting Coalition Partners

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 1 2022
Trefwoorden negotiation, absolute majority, oversized coalition, motivations, local election
Auteurs Geoffrey Grandjean en Valentine Meens
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Following the municipal elections in the Walloon Region (Belgium) on 14 October 2018, 189 political groups won an absolute majority. Twenty-two of these decided not to exercise power alone, but favoured the formation of an oversized coalition by integrating a minority partner. The aim of this article is to identify the motivations behind the formation of a local coalition when one of the partners has an absolute majority. Semi-structured interviews with mayors and leaders of political groups in these municipalities make it possible to identify the motivations for, first, the choice to open and, second, the choice of a minority partner. By distinguishing between necessary and supporting motivations, this article shows that the search for greater representation is a necessary motivation for the choice to open, whereas personal affinities and memories of the past are necessary motivations for choosing minority partners. By prioritising motivations, this article shows that.


Geoffrey Grandjean
Geoffrey Grandjean is Professor of Political Science at the Faculty of Law, Political Science and Criminology of the University of Liege and Director of the Institut de la decision publique.

Valentine Meens
Valentine Meens is Assistant of Political Science at the Faculty of Law, Political Science and Criminology of the University of Liege.
Thema-artikel

Participeren, juridiseren of politiseren?

De effectiviteit en legitimiteit van verschillende routes voor de strijd om de ruimte

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2022
Trefwoorden public participation, legalizing, politicizing, effective and legitimate decision-making, spatial claims
Auteurs Wouter Jan Verheul, Feie Herkes en Stavros Zouridis
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The effectiveness and legitimacy of action strategies in the realm of spatial decision making Increasing spatial claims require careful decision-making. The question is where, from an institutional point of view, decision-making can best take place. Traditionally, balancing interests takes place in the political arena. Our legal system also guarantees legally anchored interests. In addition, we have expected for decades that participation processes stimulate participation, creativity and co-creation of citizens and entrepreneurs. Moreover, the arrival of the new Environment Act in the Netherlands gives participation a more compelling character: for private initiators, such as project developers, the organization of participation is even a hard requirement in a number of cases. Under the new Environment Act, policymakers, administrators, citizens and companies must constantly make a choice between participating, legalizing or politicizing in decision-making processes. This article analyses this choice from the perspectives of effectiveness and legitimacy. Is decision-making through participation more effective, or are parties better off in the courtroom, or the local council for effective and legitimate decisions? Theoretically, this question is interesting because the answer teaches us about effective and legitimate governance. For the practice of environmental decision-making, we consider when the participatory, legal or political route can best be followed to create both effective and legitimate decisions.


Wouter Jan Verheul
Dr. W.J. Verheul is senior onderzoeker gebiedsontwikkeling en universitair docent urban development management aan de TU Delft en daarnaast zelfstandig bestuurskundig adviseur.

Feie Herkes
F.J. Herkes MSc is promovendus aan Tilburg University en is tevens verbonden aan het kennisprogramma Bindend Besturen in Brabant.

Stavros Zouridis
Prof. dr. mr. S. Zouridis is hoogleraar bestuurskunde aan Tilburg University en is tevens verbonden aan het kennisprogramma Bindend Besturen in Brabant.
Thema-artikel

Access_open Institutionele ruimte voor wonen: de woning­crisis en achterliggende systeemkwesties op de agenda

Tijdschrift Bestuurskunde, Aflevering 1 2022
Trefwoorden Housing crisis, Issue attention cycle, Institutional transitions, Spatial planning, Policy instruments
Auteurs Wouter Jan Verheul en Fred Hobma
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The housing crisis is a social, political and policy issue that has not been as topical in recent decades as it is today. Over the past 25 years, the housing crisis has grown from an orphaned dossier to a problem that even has people taking to the streets. Starting from the issue attention cycle, after the alarm phase we are now in the contemplation phase of this cycle. Although the diagnosis of the problem is shared in this phase and agreement begins to emerge about the solutions, we also see the beginning of reflections on the effectiveness of the intended policy instruments and doubts about the feasibility of the objectives. Nowadays, the question is regularly asked whether major institutional changes should not be made to tackle the housing crisis. This article uses the current contemplation phase to address important institutional issues. The conclusion is that without thinking about institutional transitions, no major breakthroughs can be expected in the housing crisis and related spatial issues.


Wouter Jan Verheul
Dr. W.J. Verheul is senior onderzoeker gebiedsontwikkeling en universitair docent urban development management aan de TU Delft en zelfstandig bestuurskundig adviseur.

Fred Hobma
Mr. dr. F.A.M. Hobma is universitair hoofddocent omgevingsrecht en mastercoördinator Management in the Built Environment aan de TU Delft.
Artikel

Access_open Niet alleen lokaal

Verkenning van verschillen tussen coproductie-initiatieven op de lokale, regionale en nationale bestuurslagen

Tijdschrift Beleidsonderzoek Online, april 2022
Auteurs Hessel Bos en Carola van Eijk
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Coproductie is niet meer weg te denken uit de Nederlandse bestuurspraktijk. Hierbij ligt de focus vooral op de lokale bestuurslaag, waar coproductie makkelijker te implementeren zou zijn. Toch bestaan er wel degelijk coproductie-initiatieven op regionaal en nationaal niveau. De lokale, regionale en nationale overheid vervullen echter staatsrechtelijk en institutioneel gezien andere functies en voeren andere taken uit. Daarnaast verschilt de (gepercipieerde) afstand tussen burger en overheid tussen de bestuurslagen, evenals het abstractieniveau van de onderwerpen die op de betreffende bestuurslaag worden behandeld. Bestaand onderzoek richt zich echter nauwelijks op de vraag of coproductie hiermee wel op dezelfde wijze wordt vormgegeven op de verschillende bestuurslagen. Dit exploratieve onderzoek verkent deze verschillen door het bestuderen van zes coproductie-initiatieven op het gebied van duurzaamheid en ruimtelijke ordening en pleit voor meer onderzoek naar coproductie op regionaal en nationaal niveau.


Hessel Bos
Hessel Bos heeft in 2020 de master Public Management and Leadership met honours afgerond aan de Universiteit Leiden. Tijdens zijn studie heeft hij een jaar stage gelopen in de Eerste Kamer bij de GroenLinksfractie. Een belangrijk onderwerp waarvoor hij zijn ondersteuning heeft verleend, is het Invoeringsbesluit van de Omgevingswet, waarin ook het participatieproces is vastgelegd. Tijdens zijn studie werkte hij bij het Interstedelijk Studenten Overleg als beleidsmedewerker medezeggenschap. Inspraak en (mede)zeggenschap zijn belangrijke interesses voor hem. Momenteel is hij werkzaam als docent maatschappijleer en maatschappijwetenschappen op het Zwijsen College.

Carola van Eijk
Carola van Eijk is als universitair docent verbonden aan het Instituut Bestuurskunde, Universiteit Leiden. In haar onderzoek richt zij zich op de coproductie van publieke diensten en andere vormen van burgerparticipatie waarbij een directe interactie ontstaat tussen burgers en de overheid. Ze bestudeert onder andere de motivatie van burgers om deel te nemen, de conflicterende belangen waarmee overheidsprofessionals te maken krijgen in coproductieprocessen en de uitdagingen rondom het organiseren van coproductie in kwetsbare buurten.

Rik Reussing
Dr. G.H. Reussing is onderwijscoördinator van de joint degree Public Governance across Borders aan de Universiteit Twente en redactiesecretaris van Bestuurswetenschappen.
Essay

Een nieuwe weg naar Rome?

Alternatieve vorm van burgerparticipatie bij stadsverbetering

Tijdschrift Bestuurs­wetenschappen, Aflevering 1 2022
Auteurs Nico Nelissen en Wouter Jan Verheul
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Municipalities are in a new phase of development. This requires rethinking how citizens can be involved in these developments. Instead of asking citizens to respond to municipal project initiatives, one of the (new) ways is to let citizens have their say about where, what and how urban improvements can be made. In this essay, the authors discuss what they mean by ‘areas for improvement’ and discuss two experiments – in two of the oldest Dutch cities: Maastricht and Nijmegen – of citizen participation that are intended to address such areas. In their view, in this way ‘a new, but obviously not the only, way to Rome is created’ in terms of citizen participation.


Nico Nelissen
Prof. dr. N.J.M. Nelissen is emeritus hoogleraar aan de Radboud Univer­siteit Nijmegen, redactielid en oud-hoofdredacteur van Bestuurs­wetenschappen.

Wouter Jan Verheul
Dr. W.J. Verheul is onderzoeker, adviseur en universitair docent aan de Technische Universiteit Delft bij de faculteit Bouwkunde. Hij houdt zich bezig met urban governance & leadership, grote iconische stadsprojecten, stedelijke gebiedstransformaties, place branding en place making.
Artikel

Lessen uit het Amsterdamse experiment met de bijstand

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2022
Trefwoorden Experiment, Social assistance, Activation, Social participation, Amsterdam
Auteurs Paul de Beer en Sandra Bos
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In the period 2018-2021 the municipality of Amsterdam conducted an experiment with beneficiaries of social assistance. Benefit recipients could voluntarily participate in the experiment. They were randomly assigned to three experimental conditions, viz. ‘extra attention’ (in which they received more frequent counseling and support), ‘self-direction’ (which offered the participants the freedom to make their own choices), and the ‘comparison group’ (the control group which received the customary treatment). Under all three conditions, participants who worked part-time could earn up to €200 a month on top of their social assistance benefit. A little over 800 participants (of the 5,000 in total) were followed closely by researchers of the Amsterdam University of Applied Science (HvA) and the University of Amsterdam (UvA). Although the participants who got ‘extra attention’ did not significantly flow out more frequently from the social assistance system than participants in the other two conditions, they did more often have a part-time job at the end of the experiment. There were no significant differences between the conditions with respect to participation in other non-paid activities, such as voluntary work and informal care. In-depth interviews with a selection of the participants showed, among other outcomes, that they considered the financial uncertainty as a main hindrance for doing (more) part-time work.


Paul de Beer
Prof. dr. Paul de Beer is verbonden aan HSI-AIAS, gelieerd aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam.

Sandra Bos
Dr. Sandra Bos is verbonden aan de Hogeschool van Amsterdam.
Artikel

Technologie voor mensen met afstand tot de arbeidsmarkt

Toepassingen van een mensgerichte aanpak

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2022
Trefwoorden human-centered design, inclusive technology, impaired workers, cognitive support, Augmented Reality
Auteurs Michiel de Looze, Kim Kranenborg en Ellen Wilschut
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    New ict and robots in the workplace may raise productivity but can have negative effects on people. A human-centered approach and human-centered technology may prevent negative outcomes. In the present article, this is outlined for the diverse and vulnerable group of ‘people with distance to the labour market’.
    These people face difficulties in getting a job and holding a job for a long period of time. For getting a job, they may need support in getting motivated and acquiring the necessary skills. For holding a job, support may be needed for adequate task performance, for staying healthy and vital, for personal development and for being able to switch from one job to another.
    Various technologies may provide one or more of these types of support. In particular, cognitive support technology has a great potential to make difficult work easier and therefore more accessible to more people. In three case descriptions we illustrate the application of a human-centered approach and the potential of operator support technology for cognitively impaired people.
    The case description shows the surplus value of the human centered approach, analyzing first the barriers and needs of the people involved, before iteratively testing and developing the technology with an active involvement of end-users. The described cases as well as other small-scale pilots contribute to our insight in the potential of operator support technology in increasing the accessibility of jobs for cognitively impaired people. The quantification of effects on work participation requires application of this type of technology on a much larger scale.


Michiel de Looze
Dr. Michiel de Looze is onderzoeker bij TNO.

Kim Kranenborg
Drs. Kim Kranenborg is onderzoeker bij TNO.

Ellen Wilschut
Dr. Ellen Wilschut is onderzoeker bij TNO.
Artikel

Access_open Experimenteren met basisbanen in Groningen en Rotterdam

Tijdschrift Beleid en Maatschappij, Aflevering 1 2022
Trefwoorden basic jobs, active labour market policy, structural unemployment, job guarantee
Auteurs Kees Mosselman, Fabian Dekker en Elisa de Vleeschouwer
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article examines the experiences of Dutch municipalities with the so called ‘basic job’. Basic jobs are primarily meant for individuals lacking realistic prospects on the mainstream labour market. These jobs should provide good work on a permanent basis. In both Groningen and Rotterdam, the basic job is used to improve the labour market perspectives of long-term job seekers. These are still relatively small interventions, which show that the basic job contributes to an improvement in the participants’ chances of work, their health and well-being. At the same time, it’s a costly experiment, in which the municipalities are net contributors and scalability only seems possible through the introduction of a national room for experimentation with accompanying monitor research and by adopting a broader perspective on economic growth. Only then, a more definitive judgment can be made about the viability of the basic job.


Kees Mosselman
Drs. Kees Mosselman is verbonden aan de Hanzehogeschool Groningen, lectoraat Arbeidsparticipatie.

Fabian Dekker
Dr. Fabian Dekker is verbonden aan het onderzoeksbureau SEOR, gelieerd aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam en redactielid van Beleid en Maatschappij.

Elisa de Vleeschouwer
Elisa de Vleeschouwer, MSc, is verbonden aan het onderzoeksbureau SEOR, gelieerd aan de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

    Since 1989, the parties participating in the Dutch elections have been obliged to opt for the legal form of an association with full legal capacity, if they wish to be stated on the ballot under their own name. What this has meant in practice for the structure of local party organisations is, however, unknown. For this reason, this article focuses on the question of how local parties are organised. How have the parties arranged their internal functioning and what human and financial resources do they have at their disposal? A second reason to take a closer look at the organisation of local parties lies in their increased electoral significance. Since 2010, as a collective category, they have managed to attract the largest percentage of voters, with 29% of the total number of votes in the 2018 municipal elections. This justifies the question of whether the social significance of local parties is now just as strong. How do local parties organise their members, sympathisers and volunteers. On the basis of this exploratory study into the organisation of local parties, it can be concluded that both the internal and the external facets of the party organisation are relatively highly developed. Where, according to the literature, national political parties place less emphasis on the external mobilisation function, we see that local parties perform better than the branches of national parties in terms of both the internal organisational function and the external mobilisation function.


Marcel Boogers
Prof. dr. M.J.G.J.A. Boogers is hoogleraar Innovatie en Regionaal Bestuur aan de Universiteit Twente, onderzoeker bij Necker van Naem en hoofdredacteur van Bestuurswetenschappen.

Gerrit Voerman
Prof. dr. G. Voerman is directeur van het Documentatiecentrum Nederlandse Politieke Partijen (DNPP) en hoogleraar Ontwikkeling en functioneren van het Nederlandse en Europese partijstelsel aan de Rijksuniversiteit Groningen.

    The history of local parties in the Netherlands is quite a mystery. Since their first appearance at the dawn of the twentieth century, local parties were founded sooner or later in all municipalities. They seemed to have served as an addition to local representatives of national parties. Despite the variety in their ideologies, shapes and modi operandi, they could be qualified and studied as ‘niche parties’, offering an alternative to the viewpoints and divisions of the traditional (national) party politics. With this article, the authors aim to contribute to a better understanding of Dutch local parties, whose origins and development have largely remained a black box due to the scarcity of sources and studies. They do so by adopting a partly quantitative, partly qualitative or narrative approach, while looking at the election results of local parties in the past century, including salient regional differences, and by comparing these to the success of national parties in local elections. Within the boundaries of their research, their hypothesis seems to hold true that the popularity of local parties, as ‘niche parties’, depended largely on the strategies of national parties, which justifies the assumption that these two types of parties have acted as communicating vessels.


Ingrid van Biezen
Prof. dr. I. van Biezen is hoogleraar vergelijkende politicologie aan de Universiteit Leiden. Daarvoor was ze verbonden aan de University of Birmingham.

Geerten Waling
Dr. G.H. Waling is historicus en is als onderzoeker verbonden aan de Universiteit Leiden. Hij studeerde geschiedenis en wijsbegeerte aan de Universiteit van Amsterdam.

    In this feature authors discuss recent research findings that are of interest to readers of Beleid en Maatschappij.


Jeff Handmaker
Dr. Jeff Handmaker is universitair hoofddocent rechtssociologie, International Institute of Social Studies, Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.

Sanne Taekema
Prof. dr. Sanne Taekema is hoogleraar inleiding tot de rechtswetenschap en rechtstheorie, Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam.
Article

Opposition in Times of COVID-19 – To Support or Not to Support?

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 2 2021
Trefwoorden minority government, rally-around-the-flag, COVID-19, mainstream parties, challenger parties, opposition, party goals
Auteurs Britt Vande Walle, Wouter Wolfs en Steven Van Hecke
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    COVID-19 has hit many countries all over the world, and its impact on (party) politics has been undeniable. This crisis situation functions as an opportunity structure incentivising opposition forces to support the government. Not much is known about what drives opposition parties to (not) support the government in crisis situations. This article integrates the literature on rally-around-the-flag, political opportunity structures, party types and party goals. More specifically, we focus on the behaviour of opposition parties towards the government’s crisis response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We analyse whether and how the party type influences the position of the party vis-à-vis the governmental coalition, focusing on the case of Belgium. We categorise the seven opposition parties in Belgium as challenger or mainstream parties and explain their behaviour on the basis of policy-, office- or vote-seeking motives. Our analysis is based on party voting behaviour, elite interviews and an analysis of the main plenary debates.


Britt Vande Walle
Britt Vande Walle is PhD Researcher at the KU Leuven Public Governance Instituted, funded by a FWO fellowship ‘Fundamental Research’. Her research focuses on comparative politics, political parties, and political party think tanks. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9594-9897.

Wouter Wolfs
Wouter Wolfs is Senior Researcher at the KU Leuven Public Governance Institute. His research interests include the European Union, political finance, legislative studies and political parties. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6214-5972.

Steven Van Hecke
Steven Van Hecke is Associate Professor in Comparative and EU Politics at the KU Leuven Public Governance Institute. His research focuses on Europarties, EU institutions and European integration history. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0215-5463.
Article

‘Think Like Me, and I Will Trust You’

The Effects of Policy Opinion Congruence on Citizens’ Trust in the Parliament

Tijdschrift Politics of the Low Countries, Aflevering 3 2021
Trefwoorden political representation, parliaments, opinion congruence, political trust, public opinion
Auteurs Awenig Marié en David Talukder
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Do citizens with a lower level of political representation evaluate political actors more negatively? While the literature has documented inequalities in political representation, less attention has been given to the extent to which different levels of representation affect citizens’ levels of political trust. We aimed to fill this gap by analysing whether Belgian citizens with a lower level of policy opinion congruence with their party’s legislators have lower levels of trust in the parliament. Our results show that policy opinion congruence has a positive impact on citizens’ political attitudes. Indeed, citizens with policy preferences closer to those of their political representatives tend to have higher levels of trust in the parliament. This rela‍tionship depends on political sophistication: policy opinion congruence affects political trust for most citizens except those who consider themselves to be ‘very interested’ in politics. Citizens with a very high level of interest in politics trust the parliament regardless of policy opinion congruence with their party’s legislators.


Awenig Marié
Awenig Marié is a FNRS research fellow and a PhD candidate at the Université libre de Bruxelles. His main research interests include political inequalities, political representation, parliaments and EU politics.

David Talukder
David Talukder is a PhD candidate at the Université libre de Bruxelles. His main research interests are democratic innovations, political representation, disadvantaged groups and democratic reforms.
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